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History All Conflicts / Battles / Military History

Mackett's Farm Ground Radar

REF NR: 2107

During World War II, there was a radar site which very few people knew about based in and around Mackett's farm Arreton. The initial implemented system in 1942 was not operated by the RAF but staffed by the army - being that of royal electrical and mechanical engineers. It consisted of two mobile lorries containing radar equipment that would park up around Arreton and service the Gun Operations Rooms at Newport and Fareham giving early warning of any incoming raid and thus allowing the anti-aircraft guns a chance to be serviced with details of height, distance and speed of the oncoming German strike force. 

Pictured: Southwick Fort AA Unit

This system had a range of around 45 miles which just allowed the operators time enough to put forward a reasonable defence curtain, pushing the Germans higher and thus making their accuracy far less.

 

As time went on, the need to house the arrays away from the lorries which could be easily attacked was implemented. The major equipment was then moved into a more permanent structure within underground facilities at Macketts’s farm. However, the 32 arrays were discreetly placed across the landscape with as much as possible hidden close to the ground. 
 

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